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by Mark Zalewski
July 20, 2016
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Vos doubles wins at Internationale Thüringen Rundfahrt der Frauen; Gidich wins third stage of Tour of Qinghai Lake; Four talking points from the 2016 Giro Rosa; Anatomy of a bike throw: Sagan’s stage-winning lunge for the line; Battle with the broom wagon: Suffering to stay in the Tour; How the Week Was Won: 2016 Tour de France, Stages 10-16; Rohan Dennis leaving Tour de France; A mid-season chat: Joe Dombrowski talks beer, cars, and renewed contract with Cannondale-Drapac; Cummings replaces Kennaugh for Olympic road race; AG2R LA MONDIALE extends sponsorship through 2020; Turkish Olympian motivated to perform at Qinghai Lake following failed coup attempt in Ankara; Team Sky on Pinarello through 2020; List of Tour de France team budgets; Sagan at the Tour de France, by the numbers; Tour de France, stage 16 on-board highlights; OBE Backstage Pass, stage 16; Tour of Qinghai Lake, stage 2 highlights
It’s a cruel reality of bike racing that a stage of more than 200km can be decided by mere centimetres. That the difference between success and defeat can be less than 0.00001% of a race’s total distance. And for the loser, the pain of defeat is only compounded when that loss is the result of a small error at exactly the wrong time.
On stage 16 of the 2016 Tour de France, Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) fell short of his first stage victory in this year’s race by a mere tyre’s width. In Kristoff’s own words, the win should have been his and would have been were it not for a mistimed final lunge for the line.
“At the end I felt I had him [Peter Sagan] behind me — I felt I had him,” Kristoff said after the stage. “But then he just managed to jump past me in the last 50 metres.
“It was a pity because I normally would have it but it was a mistake from me — I was looking too long down and suddenly I looked up and I was on the finish line. So that was a mistake.”
The still image at the finish shows Kristoff and eventual stage winner Sagan (Tinkoff) in markedly different poses. Where Sagan has his bike well out in front of him, desperately throwing it towards the finish, Kristoff is standing over his frame and hasn’t yet lunged for the line.
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